Kraftwerk Co-Founder Florian Schneider Passes Away at 73

The pioneering electronic musician leaves a legacy of influence.

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Music
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Confirmed by Billboard and Sony Berlin, Kraftwerk member Florian Schneider has died at age 73. The co-founder of the influential electronic band was planning a summer tour of North America to tie in with Kraftwerk’s 50th anniversary, but it had been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement, Kraftwerk co-founder Ralf Hütter iterated “the very sad news that his friend and companion over many decades Florian Schneider has passed away from a short cancer disease just a few days after his 73rd birthday.” Hütter and Schneider formed Kraftwerk in 1970, influencing countless generations of creatives with their pioneering approaches to performance and electronic production. Hit songs like “Trans-Europe Express” and “Musique Non Stop” granted them frequent appearances on the Billboard charts.

Musicians as diverse as JAY-Z, Afrika Bambaataa, Daft Punk and David Bowie sampled and/or paid tribute to Kraftwerk during their careers; Bowie specifically honored Schneider with “V-2 Schneider” from his 1977 album, Heroes.

Kraftwerk were recently nominated again for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, their sixth nomination.

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